Santa Cruz Good Times

Sunday
Jan 25th
Text size
  • Increase font size
  • Default font size
  • Decrease font size

Students Protest 32 Percent Fee Increase

blog_slug1Frustrated students leave classrooms and take to the streets

“I think it's great that enough people want to make a change, that they're all out here, skipping classes, not eating, not doing anything,” said UC Santa Cruz freshman Tess Geyer. “They're just out here protesting [and] standing up for the rights of our class itself and then future classes.”

The Nov. 18 protest was organized weeks earlier in conjunction with the regents' expected approval of a 32 percent fee increase that same afternoon.

The protest began at the Baytree Quarry Plaza at noon with an electric 400-person crowd. Rousing orators belted speeches from their megaphones, and slam poets commented on the injustice. The mob marched from the quarry plaza down to the base of campus at Bay and High Streets, where they gathered and blocked the East entrance. An open microphone and stereo powered by bicycle allowed people to offer thoughts and articulate their exasperation over the budget cuts.

blog_slug2From the base of campus, many protesters marched to the West Entrance, which they also blocked.  Students took votes on which cars to let through and agreed to let garbage trucks and parents going to pick up their kids pass. An altercation began, however, when a truck with 20 large concrete pipes for construction tried to force its way through. After arguing with the driver, students let the driver pass.

The protest left a bitter taste in the mouth of people in their cars, as traffic on parts of Empire Grade, High Street, Western Drive, and Meder Street for hours.  One man at the West Entrance sat in his car trying to persuade protesters to let him through.

“I feel pretty bad for him, but if we keep making exceptions for certain people, it gets bigger and bigger, and then anyone can come in,” said Geyer. “Our whole point for being here is to shut down the campus so that classes don't happen, and so that people realize how the classes would be without students.”

Groans erupted from the protesters in the street when a student on his cell phone announced that the UC Regents had already approved the fee hike at their conference in UCLA. The fees will increase next quarter and in the fall, representing a 32 percent increase over the next year.

“You're just getting rid of any chance you have to get new people,” said Geyer. “You don't know what people you're turning away. They could have ideas to fix this whole problem and recession, but you're never gonna know because they can't afford to come here.”

Traffic improved at 4:30 p.m. when students left both campus entrances for a student occupation the Kresge Town Hall where they would plan their next day of protest and action.

Comments (0)Add Comment

Write comment
smaller | bigger

busy
 

Share this on your social networks

Bookmark and Share

Share this

Bookmark and Share

 

Force of Nature

Santa Cruz’s Carlie Statsky brings her love of the natural world to the hyper-personal art of wedding photography

 

Mercury Retrograde in Aquarius

The magical time of Mercury’s retrograde cycle is here once again, until Feb. 11, and then some. The Mercury retro cycle actually lasts eight weeks when we consider its retrograde shadow, giving us six months a year for review. We know the rules of Mercury retro: Be careful with everything; cars, driving, money, resources, friends, friendships, groups, interactions, thinking, talking, communications. Avoid big purchases, important meetings and important repairs. Mercury retrograde times are for review, reassessment and rest. Our minds are overloaded from the last Mercury retro. Our minds need to assess what we’ve done since October—eliminating what is not needed, keeping what’s important, preparing for new information in the next three months (till mid-May). Mercury in Aquarius retrograde … we reinvent ourselves, seek the unusual, we don’t hide, we’re just careful. We live in two worlds; outer appearances and inner reckonings, with both sides of our brain activated. Yet, like the light of the Gemini twins, one light waxes (inner world), the other (outer realities) wanes. Like Virgo, we see what’s been overlooked—assessing, ordering and organizing information. It’s an entirely inner process. When speaking we may utter only half of the sentence. We’re in the underworld, closer to Spirit, eyes unseeing, senses alerted, re-doing things over and over till we sometimes collapse. Because we’re in other realms, we’re wobbly, make mistakes, and don’t really know what we want. It’s not a time for decisions. Not yet. It’s a time of review. And completing things. Mercury retro: integration, slowing down, resolution, rapprochement.

 

The New Tech Nexus

Community leaders in science and technology unite to form web-based networking program

 

Film, Times & Events: Week of January 23

Santa Cruz area movie theaters >
Sign up for Good Times weekly newsletter
Get the latest news, events

RSS Feed Burner

 Subscribe in a reader

Latest Comments

 

Bye Bye Benten!

Benten closing, plus Award-winning gin, a massive burrito and chocolate review

 

Trout Gulch Vineyards

Scanning the shelves of Deluxe Foods of Aptos, which carries an impressive selection of local and imported wines, I picked up a bottle of Trout Gulch Vineyards Chardonnay 2012, described as “a local favorite” by the busy market.

 

Cremer House

What’s old is cutting-edge again in Felton

 

How are you going to make a tangible difference in your community this year?

Spread more kindness and compassion.